America’s highest court has declined to even hear a case brought by a retired lawyer that claimed President-elect Barack Obama is not qualified to take the highest office in the land.

The issue of whether the candidates were “natural-born citizens” of the United States, as stipulated in the Constitution, was raised during the campaign.

The defeated Republican Senator John McCain was born in Panama, leading to questions about his status.

In June Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee, released his birth certificate (see below) to prove he had been born in Hawaii and not Kenya, the birthplace of his father.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas had distributed a lawsuit from retired New Jersey lawyer Leo Donofrio to his fellow justices.

“Since Barack Obama’s father was a citizen of Kenya, and therefore subject to the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom at the time of Senator Obama’s birth, then Senator Obama was a British citizen ‘at birth’, just like the framers of the Constitution, and therefore, even if he were to produce an original birth certificate proving he were born on US soil, he still wouldn’t be eligible to be President,” it claimed.

President-elect Obama was born in August 1961, two years before Kenya became an independent nation.

The BBC reports: “a decision not to grant a writ of certiorari – the legal term for the declaration that the justices will hear the case – means that a lower court ruling that dismissed the lawsuit can stand.”

Barack Obama will take office on January 20th after he takes the oath of office as part of an elaborate Washington inauguration. He was elected on November 4th.